Exbury Gardens & Steam Railway
Average time spent – 3-4+ hours.
Things to do at Exbury Gardens & Steam Railway review
Exbury Gardens & Steam Railway is a beautiful 200-acre woodland garden, set in the south of Hampshire, just below the New Forest, near the edge of the Beaulieu River. Make sure you pick up a map of the gardens and check if they have a themed trail map also available.
You can take a walk through the different pathways and around one of the three stunning ponds. Exbury holds the National Collection of Nyssa and Oxydendrum and some of the earliest planted Cedar trees date back to 1738! The huge Giant Redwoods were so impressive. There is a great wooden adventure playground. With huge woven rope swings, a slide for the toddlers and assault course style climbing equipment for older children all set on soft bark flooring.
Exbury offers Guided garden tours for small and large groups which would be a great way to learn about all the different plants and tree, including buggy tours available for £5 each. Hanging from an Oak tree near Exbury House hangs a beautiful, huge Burmese temple bell, which is believed to have possibly been brought back from the First Burmese War in the 1820s by Captain Marryat, who later wrote The Children of the New Forest.
There are lots of different gardens including a Sundial Garden. rock garden, Japanese garden, winter garden, heather gardens, yard wood, wildlife ponds and more. The gardens are an amazing day out for plant lovers but equally lovely as a day out with the family. There are so many pathways to explore and the chance to take part in adventure trails, bug hunting and scavenger hunts every day for children of all ages. Exbury organises themed family events over the various school holidays.
Exbury boasts a working narrow-gauge steam railway and a replica station. The train runs during usual opening days but puts on seasonal specials at Halloween and Christmas. The trains are housed in an engine shed where you can also have a look at photos, videos and other memorabilia.
Eating – Mr. Eddy’s restaurant and cafe plus a tennis courts cafe are located on-site. You can picnic in the grounds.
Facilities in brief – Extensive grounds with pathways, ever-changing according to the season. Fish in the ponds, steam train rides, adventure playground. Places to eat and toilets. There are special events during most school holidays including trails and other activities.
Entry price – *Higher priced
*Prices are subject to change and/or discounts online. *Higher priced – Adults are £17.50 for train and gardens, children are £4-9.
Opening: Exbury Gardens and steam railway are open mid-March until autumn. They open on certain dates in winter for their festive Christmas special. For up to date opening times and dates please follow this link.
Information on accessibility – Exbury Gardens aims to enable visitors with disabilities and additional mobility needs to use and enjoy the gardens, railway and facilities.
Address: Exbury, Southampton SO45 1AZ, Hampshire, England. Phone: 023 8089 1203
Category – Great outdoors and steam railway, suitable for all ages.
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Map below shows only attractions in Hampshire